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M I L T E R M S : fingerspelled letter Q semaphor letter Q signal flag letter Q Q : QUEBEC

The emphasis of this educational reference is on words and phrases that appear in published works about war and military service; and amongst this jargon and slang, there is no pretense of objectivity or completeness, which may be readily found in official documents or government resources. This fragmentary opus is a work in progress ....

Caveat Lector: Vulgar, profane, and obscene dysphemisms, which have been used for every part of speech and rhetorical form, have not been Bowdlerized nor expurgated from this glossary, to the undoubted dismay of purists and the evident enrichment of our mother-tongue; so immature or hypersensitive persons should refrain from perusing this indubitably eclectic and contingently egregious compendium. Swearing is usually either juvenile or crass, but military personnel admire talent and respect skill, so the ability to create imaginative expletives and to craft uncommon scurrility is often appreciated.


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Q :
an aircraft prefix under the Joint Service Designation System that represents 'target'.

QC :
crest of the South Vietnamese
Military Police
RVN MP
Quan Canh, the Vietnamese equivalent of American Military Police (MP); instituted in 1953 as part of the Gendarmerie (French Military Police) from infantry NCOs who were given specialized training on law enforcement and discipline; it was redesignated the Military Police branch in 1955, becoming a separate branch of the Vietnamese armed forces (AFVN) in 1961. The Quan Canh training school, located at Vung Tau, was based upon the American model at Fort Gordon GA; and a 16 week criminal investigations course was also situated in Vung Tau. There were 47 QC stations setup in garrison towns across the country, and 5 POW camps for prisoner interrogation and rehabilitation, with US advisors assigned at every level. The QC was commanded by a Provost Marshal General, a special staff officer on the Joint General Staff (JGS), Republic of Vietnam Armed Forces. See NPFF, NPSS, WHITE MICE, POLICE.

Q-COURSE :
general term, Qualification course, for any training program that results in either a proficiency rating, or a modified Military Occupational Specialty (MOS), or both; proficiency ratings are denoted by skill badges (TRASH) or qualification tabs (Q-TAB), and can alter the basic MOS by the addition of a numeric prefix or a letter suffix (eg: 3-prefix/S-suffix = SF). Since the Vietnam-era, when a one-week Pre-Recondo course was a prerequisite for the three-week MACV Recondo School, all of the Q-COURSEs have instituted a Pre-Q (and in some cases, a Pre-Pre-Q course) to reduce attrition, making the Q-COURSEs more cost effective. Q-COURSEs range in length from two weeks for AIR ASSAULT and JUMPMASTER, to three weeks for AIRBORNE and RECONDO, JUNGLE EXPERT and SAPPER, to nine weeks for SCOUT/SNIPER and RANGER, to more than a year for PILOT and SPECIAL FORCES training. See MOS, PMOS, POI, ASI, SQI, SFQC, CROSS-TRAINING, OJT, TICKET, STRIKER, RETREAD, RATING, BILLET, BERTH, CHARM SCHOOL, COC, ACTA, RECONDO, SERE, BOLO BADGE, Q-TAB, TRIPLE CANOPY, EOD, UDT, SCUBA, SEAL, DIVER, DOLPHIN, WATER WINGS, BIRDMAN, JET JOCKEY, PROP JOCKEY, ROTOR HEAD, WINGS, PINNING, OVAL, FLASH, RIGGER, POWER WALL, PRO PAY.

QM :
U.S. Army Quartermaster Corps
branch insignia U.S. Army Quartermaster Corps
branch insignia
quartermaster
quartermaster, being the proverbial "4 shop", as S-4/G-4/J-4 (v: J-CODES, STAFF); see SUPPLY, LOGISTICS, ARSENAL, ARMORY, MOTOR POOL, DUMP, DEPOT, PRE-POS, HOBSON'S CHOICE. Also, in NavSpeak, designation for an assistant navigator; compare COXSWAIN.

QMC :
QuarterMaster Corps.

Q-PILL :
see POISON PILL.

QRA :
Quick Reaction Alert; also "Quick Response Alert".

QRC :
Quick Reaction Capable / Capability; also "Quick Response Capability".

QRF :
Quick Reaction Force, also called "Quick Reaction Team"; also "Quick Response Force"; see RRF.

QRT :
Quick Reaction Team, also called "Quick Reaction Force"; also "Quick Response Team"; see RRF, RT.

Q-SHIP :
a WARSHIP camouflaged as a noncombatant vessel with its armament and other defensive equipment hidden, arranged with special provisions for quickly unmasking its weapons; also called "decoy ship". Also, an anti-submarine platform disguised as a merchant ship with its guns, depth charges, and other fighting equipment concealed so as to invite SUBMARINE attack. See DECOY, CAMO, DECEPTION, ASW, GHOST SHIP. [nb: the Geneva Convention specifically prohibits entrapment, such as an ambush during a truce]

Q-TAB :
triple canopy Q-tab
triple canopy
Q-tab
a Qualification-TAB denoting individual proficiency, that is authorized for wear, like any other personal award, as a shoulder sleeve insignia (SSI) regardless of later assignment. Unlike pocket badges, which are limited and/or restricted, all Q-TABs may be worn simultaneously above the current unit PATCH in the following order: President's 100, SPECIAL FORCES, RANGER, SAPPER. Also called "Q-arc" or "qual", and should not be confused with the AIRBORNE arc appended to designated unit shoulder PATCHes. See TRIPLE CANOPY, BOLO BADGE, TRASH, WINGS, Q-COURSE, SFQC, GONG, FRUIT SALAD, GREEN TAB, POWER WALL, BRAGGING RIGHTS, SCROLL, TAB, REVOCATION. [v: expert, master, virtuoso, bailiwick] [nb: an insignia emblematic of the honors and lineage of a military organization, unlike familial "coats of arms", may be individually enhanced but not personally heritable; v: Heraldry]

QT :
(cue-tee) informal abbreviation for 'quiet'; see MUM, HUSH-HUSH. Also, stealthily or secretly, as "to meet someone on the QT"; see CLASSIFIED, NEED TO KNOW.

QTRS :
abbreviation for QuarTeRS, designating both living area (eg: BILLET, BERTH, RACK, BARRACK, HAMMOCK, FART SACK, HOSPITAL CORNER, SAFE HOUSE, GUARDHOUSE, CHU, CHUVILLE, BUTLER BUILDING, SEA HUT, QUONSET HUT, B-HUT, HUTMENT, TEAMHOUSE, HOOCH, LONG HOUSE, SHEBANG, TENT, VILLE, BEQ, BOQ, NOB HILL, GOQ, VOQ, OFFICER'S COUNTRY, WARDROOM, SUDS ROW, PRIME RIBS, etc) and duty area (eg: CQ, GQ, FIRE QUARTERS, COLLISION QUARTERS, ON STATION, STAND-TO, etc); the singular form 'quarter' (QTR) is rarely used. See BAQ / BAH, CANTONMENT, COMPOUND, SEPARATE RATS.

QUAD 50 :
A WWII-era antiaircraft weapon used in Vietnam as an anti-personnel weapon; also spelled "quad-fifty", "quad .50", "quad-50s". Consisting of four electric solenoid firing M-2 .50 caliber machineguns, mounted in a movable SPONSON as used for fire base and convoy security; designated M-55. See GUN TRUCK, HEAVY MG, FIFTY, MA DEUCE, MG. [nb: the Browning M-3P .5O-caliber machinegun is remotely-controlled and electrically-fired, as designed for use in ground vehicles, watercraft, and aircraft] [nb: in 1983, the MK19-3 40mm grenade machinegun (@72.5#), being a belt-fed, blowback-operated, and air-cooled automatic weapon for delivering decisive firepower against enemy personnel and lightly armored vehicles to an effective range of 2200m, replaced the M-2 heavy machinegun as the primary suppressive weapon in vehicle-mounted combat support operations]

QUAGMIRE :
a situation from which extrication is very difficult, being a metaphor for the VIETNAM WAR, from its existence as a mire or bog that yields only to ensnare; see DECENT INTERVAL, DOMINO THEORY, APOCALYPSE, GUMBO, QUICKSAND, TAR BABY, WHITE ELEPHANT, BELL THE CAT, BITTER END, FOGGY BOTTOM. [v: The Making of a Quagmire, America and Vietnam During the Kennedy Era by David Halberstam (1965)]

QUAKER :
see AMERICAN FRIENDS SERVICE COMMITTEE, PACIFIST.

QUAKER CANNON :
see ARTY, DECEPTION, TRICK, DECOY, RUSE DE GUERRE, RED HERRING, PHANTOM OPERATIONS, GHOST UNIT, GHOST FRONT, PSYOPS, DISINFORMATION.

QUALS :
qualifications; compare TICKET; see Q-TAB, BOLO BADGE, TRASH, WINGS, Q-COURSE, MIL-CRAFT, TRADE SCHOOL, PRECONIZE, REVOCATION.

QUANGO :
a semi-independent agency or bureau; acronym derived from QUasi Autonomous National Governmental Organization; compare NGO, GOCO, COCO, OGA, BELTWAY BANDIT.

QUARANTINE :
a system of control measures maintained at ports of entry and other frontiers for preventing the spread of contagious diseases, especially a period of detention in strict isolation; derived from a "period of forty days"; see SEGREGATION, SEQUESTRATION, CORDON SANITAIRE, NO FLY ZONE, YELLOW JACK, ZERO-ZERO WARD. Also, the imposition of social, political, or economic isolation.

QUARTER :
one of the damage-control or enemy-action stations assigned to MIL-PERS during emergency (general quarters), combat (battle stations), or training (DRILL) situations; compare GQ, FIRE QUARTERS, COLLISION QUARTERS. Also, to house or lodge MIL-PERS in accommodations; see QTRS, BARRACK, BILLET. Also, MERCY or indulgence shown to a vanquished enemy; see HORS DE COMBAT, COUP DE GRACE, STRIKE THE FLAG, THROW IN THE TOWEL, CARTE BLANCHE, WHITE FLAG, FLAG OF TRUCE, FLAG OF PROTECTION. Also, a coin of the United States and various other nations, being equal to twenty-five cents (PENNY), or one fourth of a DOLLAR; see LEGAL TENDER. Also, one of the four equal or equivalent parts into which something may be divided, such as time or distance, weight or portion, phase or term; see COMPASS ROSE, BOX THE COMPASS.

QUARTERDECK :
that part of a vessel's weather DECK running from midship to the STERN or POOP DECK, may have bulwarks. Compare FANTAIL, FORECASTLE.

QUARTERDECK FACE :
the remote and aloof visage adopted by Navy officers to indicate their formal demeanor as being responsible for the enforcement of all regulations. At the conclusion of shipboard fetes or high jinks or other informalities, the ship's officers would "ship a QUARTERDECK FACE again" as a signal that breaches or infractions would no longer be countenanced, and to denote a resumption of normal routine and traditional protocol. Compare HALF-MAST, FLINT FACE, DEADPAN, FACE. [nb: the pan is the depressed part of the lock holding the priming in old guns, so a "deadpan" facial expression derives from a musket's flash-pan being empty, that is, without any primer to set-off the charged barrel when the hammer falls to strike a spark of ignition]

QUARTERMASTER :
see QM.

QUASI-WAR :
(forthcoming); 1798 virtual war with revolutionary France, resulted in passage of the Alien and Sedition Acts (later deemed unconstitutional) [nb: Quasi-War with France (1798-1800): 20 battle deaths] [cf: Fries' Rebellion (1798)]

QUATREFOIL :
see CONTRAFOIL, BARRACKS COVER.

QUEBEC :
the word assigned to represent the letter "Q" in the international phonetic alphabet; at various times in different spelling schemes, it has also been acrophonetically represented as Quack and Queen. See ALPHABET SOUP, PHONETIC ALPHABET. [v: Alphabet Codes & Signal Flags]

QUEEN FOR A YEAR :
catch-phrase for any female MIL-PERS stationed overseas, where the normal sex ratio of 10 or 15 women to 85 or 90 males is drastically reduced (sometimes by half) for the term of her tour of duty; where the normal attention paid to any woman by every man, while mostly innocent or even protective, becomes onerous or oppressive. The non-fraternization policy and travel restrictions typical of a garrisoned lifestyle in a foreign country usually increase her sense of isolation and victimization because she has no privacy, no outlets for frustration, and few opportunities for relaxation. Most women respond to this situation by becoming imperious or supercilious, a prima donna, hence the attribution that's been used since the VIETNAM WAR; as derived from the radio and TV prize-giveaway program: "Queen for a Day". Such denotation is also represented as "desert diamond" or "desert fox" in the Mid-East during the GULF WAR-era. See SKIRT, GI JANE, COCK BAIT, WARRIOR PRINCESS, ANGEL.

QUEEN OF BATTLE :
a proverbial motto of the infantry, identifying its essential role in combat; see INF, KISS THE MISTRESS, KNOCK THEIR SPOTS OFF, TURN THE JACK, CHESS.

QUICK-ACTING FASTENER :
see QUICK FASTENER.

QUICK OR DEAD :
the condition of troops maneuvering under fire; derived from "judge the quick and the dead" (2 Timothy 4:1), meaning 'the living and the dead'.

QUICK FASTENER :
a secure closure on emergency hatches and cowling panels that can be readily bypassed with an access device; a latch (eg: DZUS or Z-Lock and CamLoc) on vehicles and aircraft that can be quickly unlocked with a rescue tool (eg: DZUS key, Z-Lock wrench or CamLoc pliers); also known as "quick-acting fastener" or "quick-release attachment".

QUICK-RELEASE ATTACHMENT :
see QUICK FASTENER.

QUICKSAND :
a bed of considerable depth that consists of soft or loose sand that's saturated with water, the surface (sometimes crusted) of which will yield under the pressure of excessive weight and so will tend to suck down any object attempting to traverse its surface; see GUMBO, QUAGMIRE, TAR BABY.

QUICKSTEP :
formerly, a lively step used in marching to brisk music; later designated QUICK TIME. Also, the tempo of music adapted to such a brisk march rhythm. Also, a lively combination of steps in ballroom dancing.

QUICK TIME :
the command to return the formation to regular march tempo, set at the rate of 120 steps per minute, with a stride of thirty inches at each step. Compare DOUBLE TIME, FUNERAL PACE; see CADENCE, PACE, PARADE.

QUID :
a portion of something, especially tobacco, that's to be chewed but not swallowed; derived as a variant of 'cud', it's also called "chaw" and SMOKELESS TOBACCO; see CHEW, SNUFF. Also, informal reference to one British "pound sterling" or a gold "guinea"; see LEGAL TENDER.

QUIET PROFESSIONAL :
an expression representing the consummate MIL-PERS, being a soldier who's attained the highest degree of expertise; someone superbly skilled or masterly. See SHARPSHOOTER, GUNSLINGER, JUNGLE EXPERT, BUSHMASTER, MOUNTAINEER, WINTER WARRIOR, NOBLE SAVAGE, PATROL, BOLO BADGE, Q-TAB, FUGLEMAN, SUPER-TROOPER, BOOMER, GOLDEN BOY, OLD BREED, OLD SWEAT, DINOSAUR, OLD SALT, SHELLBACK, MOSSBACK, VET, VETERAN, WINTER SOLDIER, PROFESSOR, WIZARD, WONK, WALLAH, MANDARIN, 90-PAGE WONDER, BELTWAY CLERK, BEST AND BRIGHTEST, CLUB FED, RIGHT STUFF, BADGE OF COURAGE; compare HERO, MACHO, COUNT COUP, BRAGGING RIGHTS, MERC / MERCENARY, PISSING CONTEST, CARICATURE, FICTIONAL CHARACTER. [v: ne plus ultra, expert, master, virtuoso, bailiwick; cf: "wight" is a human being, who is defined as such by his ability to fight, hence is someone who's strong and brave in war] [nb: "What we are speaks louder than what we say." (mis-)attributed to Ralph Waldo Emerson by John F. Kennedy; "The few who do are the envy of the many who only watch." by Jim Rohn; "No one going as a soldier entangles himself with the affairs of life, that he may please Him who has enlisted him as a soldier." 2 Timothy 2:4 (Darby); "He had the three great requisites of a soldier: courage, skill in his profession, and grace in the presence of the danger of death." paraphrase of Ernest Hemingway (1958); "Mark this well, you proud men of action: You are nothing but the unwitting agents of the men of thought who often, in quiet self-effacement, mark out most exactly all your doings in advance." by Heinrich Heine (1834); "In these affairs, what counts is not who pulls the trigger, but who pays for the bullet." by Eric Ambler (1939)]

QUILT :
informal reference to an electronic overlay or cover for computer files or applications, protecting them from direct access by installing a disguised layer atop them; it's a security partition similar to a FIREWALL. See DECEPTION, DISINFORMATION, CONTROLLED INFORMATION, BREADCRUMBING, THE AMERICAN WALL, NETRUSION. [v: trap door, escrow key, password, Clipper]

QUISLING :
a person who betrays his own country by aiding an invading enemy, often serving later in a PUPPET government; also known as sellout, collaborator, apostate, renegade, defector, or recreant; eponymously after the pro-Nazi Norwegian leader, Vidkun Quisling. See FIFTH COLUMN, TURNCOAT, RUNNING DOG, TRAITOR.

QUONSET HUT :
trademarked brand name of a standardized and prefabricated semicylindrical shelter with wooden end-walls, suitable for any weather or region; as developed at Quonset Point Naval Base, Rhode Island. Its design was adapted from a British hut of tunnel-shaped corrugated iron with a cement floor that was called a "Nissen hut" after its inventor, Lt.Col. Peter Norman Nissen, which was used during both World Wars. The Nissen hut used two layers of metal to sandwich an insulating air pocket for comfort and protection while the QUONSET HUT used T-ribbed metal over Masonite hardboard with corrugated paper insulation; sized 16' X 20', 16' X 36', 20' X 48', 20' X 56', and 24' X 60'. A standard QUONSET HUT was shipped in twelve crates and could be assembled by ten unskilled men in one day. The QUONSET HUT was redesigned to incorporate four-foot vertical sidewalls to recover lost floor space (Brandenberger's modification) by using a lighter weight an "I" section profile of Stran-Steel that required fewer fasteners and less erection time. Larger, heavier, multi-arched, and other specialized variations of this curvilinear building design were later produced, including the all wooden PACIFIC HUT and EMKAY HUT that were developed to spare metal resources. See BLDG, BILLET; compare JAMESWAY HUT, BUTLER BUILDING, UTILITY BUILDING, ELEPHANT HUT.

QUOTA :
see SPOILS, SPOILS OF WAR, CASTE, RING-KNOCKER, KHAKI MAFIA, BOY'S CLUB, LEGACY, CAKE-EATER, POWER ELITE, TICKET-PUNCHER, UNTOUCHABLE, MILICRAT.

QVI :
Quality Verification Inspection.




MilTerms
index
S-1:
ADMIN
S-2:
INTEL
S-3:
OPNS
S-4:
QM
S-5:
CA
S-6:
COMMO
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